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If you've spent time building products then you know that the path from an initial idea to a shipped and successful thing, is more like a squiggle than a straight line between start and finish. It's a series of discoveries and evolutions, with small or large pivots as you adapt to new knowledge.

This squiggliness is true of any challenging and creative endeavour, but especially true for startups, like Qwilr, building a complex product with global reach, that has no prior precedent.

To chart the ideal course through all the squiggles, we are developing a way of working called WayFinder.

Working within the context of our Company Principles, these are our WayFinder principles:

  • Balanced clarity: We bring the excellence of our crafts together through collaboration, balancing multiple concerns in ideation, shaping, planning and delivery.
  • State of work: We focus more on the work that needs to be done and a shared sense of progress. We focus less on "process for process sake" and handovers between silos.
  • Aligned autonomy: We seek a shared understanding of goals between leadership and teams to find the right balance between strategic alignment and team autonomy.
  • Positive urgency: We are motivated to get our work into the hands of customers without compromising user experience, or our future velocity.

It's worth noting that these principles are being developed as much for the benefit of the outcomes as for the experience of work itself - to promote our motivation and satisfaction as human beings, and our effectiveness as individuals, crafts, teams and organisation.

Finally, you'll note we don't talk about principles in the past tense because they are not "finished" yet - and perhaps, in some sense, they never will be - as we grow, our ways of working are a squiggle too, we're always trying to chart a better course.

So, let's go forth and find the way.